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Leadership Philosophies

Each Leadership Certificate (LC) student composes a leadership philosophy as a component of their final capstone project. We believe conveying one's leadership philosophy is essential to communicating who you are and how you approach situations to those around you. These philosophies are informed by their leadership identity, reflected experiences, and relations to others.

Leadership Philosophies, 2023 recipients

Adithi Voleti

To maintain leadership, it is important to stay loyal to one’s mission by exhibiting strong work ethic and wholeheartedly having the passion and love for what you do. In the process, I want to remain being a good human by embracing empathy, being mindful and respectful, and touching the lives of those who I want to motivate and serve. I understand that I will face challenges, but my resilient personality will assist me in tackling and addressing them with confidence. To refine and foster my identity, I believe that leadership is bidirectional in its execution and involves the adaptability between roles, whether that be between an active spokesperson vs. active listener or older vs. younger. I see the world as a beautiful diverse place, and to me, leadership means believing that your positive efforts, whether big or small, can have an impact in society.

Ananya Mangla

My leadership philosophy is grounded in empathy, growth, adaptability to change, collaboration, and encouragement to myself and all those around me. As I have learned, the best leadership is not about optimizing power but rather service and taking care of the people I would lead. I aim to recognize my own strengths and limitations and strive to create a team that is best suited for the role and helps assist each other, where we listen to diverse perspectives and make decisions collectively that benefit our cause. I strive to create an environment where I am approachable and reliable to everyone on my team and I empower everyone, including myself, to push our limits and test our own potential. In the best way possible, I wish to be the leader that the people/situation around me need me to be for their own good.

Allison Bell

I am called to enrich the arts community with my gifts so that people’s hearts are awakened to new possibilities. I empower others to bravely pursue these possibilities through intuition and critical thinking. I strive to see the human first to lead others with intentionality and vulnerability.

Becky Woolf

My leadership philosophy is rooted in a radical approach to practicing justice in all spaces. I strive to be a transformative leader by centering lived experiences and committing to lifelong learning. All of my work emerges from an understanding that designed systems of power and oppression create the unjust realities of today, and these systems must be dismantled in order to achieve collective human liberation. I create change with storytelling as my predominant change-agent, as I believe it is our most valuable tool for creating relationships and uniting people around shared values, purpose, and mission.

Renuka Murthi

I want to continue being a leader who motivates others to be their best, authentic selves and care about the welfare of others through storytelling and community-building. Having experienced intense loneliness before in my life, one of my top priorities is making sure people I work with feel comfortable in their own skin and respected, valued, and heard by everyone around them, which is why I want to focus on community-building as a leader. Additionally, I want to mobilize others to care about causes I care about through storytelling, along with empowering others to tell stories to do the same.

Megan Shohfi

I aim to cultivate an empowering environment to nurture authentic relationships, pursue opportunities for growth, and adapt to change. From being a role model to my younger siblings at an early age, to mentoring youth from around the world, connection and mentorship have become central to my life. By practicing loyalty, reliability, and belonging in my relationships, I believe each interaction – through work or play – is an opportunity to leave people and places better than I found them.

Saniya Shahid

My philosophical approach is to strive for a harmonious coexistence between being true to oneself and committing to a continuous journey of growth and development. As a leader, I aim to uphold my promises and set a positive example for others to follow. I believe that our goal as human beings should not be to attain perfection, but rather to pursue improvement consistently, with the intention of creating the best possible outcomes for all.

Maleny Crespo

I value second chances, celebration, joy, camaraderie, respect, personal growth, knowledge, wisdom, self-love, wonder, loved ones, opportunity, unity, reunion, justice, restorative justice, and healing. I carry out my responsibilities by actively listening to the experiences and hopes of people who feel comfortable opening up to me. I prioritize ensuring active listening, not feeling alone, and providing support during tribulations and hardships. I expect followers to be transparent, vulnerable, trust, risk-takers, and understand various experiences. My personal leadership habits for learning and growth are meditation, self-reflection, being open to feedback, and acting upon what is best for myself and others. I commit to authenticity, justice, and solidarity.

Gautham Jayaraj

I aim to foster an inclusive and respectful environment where ideas are valued, and I will expect team members can practice leadership qualities even without official leadership titles. Furthermore, I will encourage members to push themselves out of their comfort zones more often to learn new skills and lessons to bring back to these comfort zones, thereby expanding them. In return, team members should expect me to facilitate a space of camaraderie that understands cultural humility and negative capability. Ultimately, I want to maintain a moral and ethical environment as a leader where people can collaborate optimally and push themselves to expand their horizons.

Kavya Chandra

I believe in commitment to authenticity, curiosity, and growth. I will routinely commit to incubational time to generate original ideas and connect with inspiration.  I strive to lead by promoting reflection through giving and receiving feedback, encouraging candid discussion, and providing inspiration through vision. I will also seek to reflect on and improve upon my weaknesses and build a team that complements them. I believe hard work driven by passion and growth is key to success.

Anna Chiara Russo

My leadership philosophy is a people-centered approach that prioritizes effective communication, trust-building, and personal and professional growth. As a leader, I believe in approaching others with understanding and compassion, recognizing that everyone has their own unique experiences and background. In addition, I aim to foster an environment of continual change, where my team members feel empowered to take risks, adapt to changing circumstances, and try new approaches, even if they involve some level of uncertainty.